With the cost of living a major concern for many Malaysians, The Malaysian Insight takes a closer look at how some families in different parts of the country are stretching the ringgit. We chose households whose combined earnings are between RM3,000 and RM4,000 to reflect those in the bottom 40% (B40) of households with a monthly income of less than RM3,900. This income range is also the bracket for Putrajaya’s RM900 annual handout under category 2 of the 1Malaysia People’s Aid (BR1M). In a two-part series today and tomorrow, we look at how households of different sizes with this income range manage their expenses, what some do for side income and how they cope in times of emergencies.
NASSIR Abdullah from Perak said his family lives by faith and so far, has never been found wanting despite having little left after spending his monthly income on necessities, while Siti Aishah Ramli from Kuching offers a prayer of thanks if she makes it through to the end of each month without any emergency to drain her finances.